DeVos Booed at Commencement Speech for Historically Black College


Education Secretary Betsy DeVos wasn't given much of a warm welcome as she gave a commencement speech to the historically black college Bethune-Cookman University.

She tried to find a common ground with the graduates, many of whom had previously protested and petitioned against her speaking at their ceremony. 

DeVos had originally caused a stir months ago when she described historically black colleges as:

"Real pioneers when it comes to school choice."

After being criticised for that comment, she back tracked and said those colleges were

"Born, not out of mere choice, but out of necessity, in the face of racism."

During the ceremony, students didn't just boo and jeer at DeVos, they literally turned their backs on her.

About two minutes into the speech, the school's president Edison Jackson stepped in and threatened to mail them their diplomas if they didn't cut the attitude.

The uproar started again mid-way through her speech as she made mention she would visit the grave of the school's founder Mary McLeod Bethune.

After the speech, DeVos released a statement saying she respected all of those in attendance.

“Including those who demonstrated their disagreement with me. While we may share differing points of view, my visit and dialogue with students leaves me encouraged and committed to supporting HBCUs.”


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